We've been retired over 14 years. Our retirement has been during one of the worst economies that I can remember. Yet, we have more investments today than when we retired. Our net worth is much more today than it was 14+ years ago even though we have had many expenses during our retirement including buying two automobiles and a home with cash. Our property and school taxes are huge because we live in a high tax state.
How can that be that we have more money than when we retired? It is because we still have income streams in retirement. We have a small pension that is fully taxable. Since we retired we have leased property that we own to a company in another state. We are now old enough to collect Social Security. But most importantly we have investments that produce income.
But I think the most important reason is because we continue to live the way we always have. We spend as little as we can to be comfortable with the life we want. We don't let other people like the "Joneses" control what we spend. We have friends who are also frugal and saving for retirement.
We live in a beautiful home that is just perfect for us but still has room to house family or friends when they visit. We eat healthy meals, enjoy an occasional glass of wine with them, dine out occasionally with friends, enjoy many different forms of entertainment, and travel when we want.
Our life is richer than when we were working because we have no commute and we are our own bosses.
We have been asked why we continue to save now that we are retired which I think is a stupid question. Just because we are retired doesn't mean that we still don't have dreams and goals. We have a huge goal that we are working towards. We also have seen so many of our retiree friends spend all of their money and become dependent on just Social Security. By saving, we also know that no matter what emergency or large expense comes our way, we have the money to afford it.
In other words, we save just as we did when we were working. We work towards a goal and we watch our net income monthly.
If you are paying down your debt, cutting your expenses and then saving as much as possible every month, you too can have that early retirement. As I told you before, it isn't easy, it takes discipline and hard work. But in my experience, if you really want something you can do it.